#1
Well, I've maxed out at a dismal 100bpm, alternate picking up and down the G major scale at position 3 (It's form justinguitar.com's lessons)

Been doing this for maybe 3 months now... just trying to build speed. I can play 4 cycles of the scale at 90bpm, at 95 I can do one before it gets sloppy and falls apart, and barely scrape 100bpm with one cycle.

But even though I'm playing about 3 hours every day.. I just don't seem to be getting anywhere. My speed isn't budging, even though I've lost count how many times I've gone back to playing slowly to increase my 'accuracy'... in fact my hands seem to be getting worse lately.

Any tips to getting through this plateau? Good exericses that helped you out?

EDIT: What a difference a few months of back-to-basics, slow, concise, precise movements makes.

Accuracy has gone up, technique has improved, speed is fastest its been for awhile - and instead of playing mechanically up and down the major scale, I've mixed up by practicising chromatics, major scale, blues scale, up and down, going in random directions, etc. It's all worked out - I can actually play accurately with my little finger too now.

And ultimately, everything sounds alot less SLOPPY!
Last edited by Hillz88 at Sep 16, 2009,
#2
that is a good excersize..

if you are playing something like that to build up speed but cant, you might have to go back to the basics, of building your technique.

its not an easy thing to change (technique) but sometimes peoples is so ****ed up they cant really get anywhere.
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#4
Are you doing the same thing everyday?
I'm still a guitar noob but from my (little) experience I do better learning something for a week and then moving on to something else. Then go back to whatever it was you were learning a week or two later, and I usually find I'm waaay better at it.

WHERE IS MY PICK?
#5
Don't practise the same thing over and over again; the more fustrated you become at it, the harder you'll find it. Personall experience. Put your guitar down for a few days and go learn something new. Not learning how to play fast up and down a scale, but maybe learning a song or whatever. Or even learning new scales. Just don't get frustrated, cause guitar is about having fun.

Speed will take time to come as well, and it comes to people in different ways. It just came to me without doing all these scales, but just came somehow, but with some people you just have to really practise hard.
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#6
Don´t practice the same thing over and over again because then you will only be able to play that one thing fast - and nothing else. Practice lots of scales and lots of positions and lots of random patterns so that you are not limited by a very specialized muscle memory.
#7
Ugh! I don't see why people practice like that. You're not going to have a metronome live so why use one at home? Play along to songs you like or are in the style that you want to play. Take certain things from those songs and apply them to your playing. Of course, you'll have to look up scales and chords on your own. Practicing scales like you are is ridiculous I think. You are just running up and down the scale hoping to build technique. However, this is bad for improvising because you keep doing the same things over and over. Improvise within your scales, don't run up and down them, and build your technique that way. I guarantee you you're not going to be alternate picking at 90bpm every time you want to improvise. This worked for me, it might not be the best method for you, but I guarantee you it's a hell of a lot funner than what you're doing.
#8
Practice different positions and scales, and even take time to learn a good song. It might help you overall.
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#10
Quote by Handym4n
Ugh! I don't see why people practice like that. You're not going to have a metronome live so why use one at home? Play along to songs you like or are in the style that you want to play. Take certain things from those songs and apply them to your playing. Of course, you'll have to look up scales and chords on your own. Practicing scales like you are is ridiculous I think. You are just running up and down the scale hoping to build technique. However, this is bad for improvising because you keep doing the same things over and over. Improvise within your scales, don't run up and down them, and build your technique that way. I guarantee you you're not going to be alternate picking at 90bpm every time you want to improvise. This worked for me, it might not be the best method for you, but I guarantee you it's a hell of a lot funner than what you're doing.



Two things:

1. It´s called a drumkit

2. If you practice to a metronome a lot then that steady rhythmic feel becomes ingrained in your soul and you play in much much much much better time even when the metronome is absent - and good time is one of those ultra crucial elements that seperates amatuers from professionals.
#11
Pretty much what everyone has already said, if your getting frustrated with scales try out some chord progressions. Not to mention just messing around, that's probably the most fun you can while playing guitar. If you like scales try to memorize some entrie scales and just improvise freely.
#12
Thanks for the tips fellahs.... much appreciated.

Biggest mistake is sticking to the same technique routine for too long...
#13
it's called a plateau... you'll get over it. we all do.
"... and on either side of the river was the tree of life, with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of this tree were for the healing of nations.
#14
Quote by konfyouzd
it's called a plateau... you'll get over it. we all do.


Yeah, cant think of anything more frustrating either

But just try and vary your playing a bit, if something isnt close to playable then just leave it to one side and then revisit it later on, maybe after a few months.
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#15
playing the same exercise for 3 hours thtat`s why your not getting better try something else.

when i was alot younger there was another kid in school that played guitar (this was over 20 years ago btw) and i was taking lessons he wasn`t.
he said he`d learnt a new song ...it was paradise city he only knew the intro when i next asked him about a month later he knew the verse in that time i had gone from grade 1 to half way to my grade 3 exam....he had just kept playing the same riff over and over and thought he was good.....moral of the story vary what your playing or get left behind
#17
Quote by Vlasco
Don´t practice the same thing over and over again because then you will only be able to play that one thing fast - and nothing else. Practice lots of scales and lots of positions and lots of random patterns so that you are not limited by a very specialized muscle memory.



i would disagree with that. if your doing 3 notes a string REALLY FAST and nothing else.
when you go to play something else, you would be able to inside and outside pick between strings with ease, making what ever you want to play fairly easy..

when practicing for speed, dont play a scale, play something like fret 5, 7, 8, going up and down the strings (same frets though)

so you keep the same fingering, but alternate strings.

you can also do it in groups of 4 as well, ie. fret 5,6,7,8. or 2 per string, what ever. mixing it up changes where your pick will be when you change strings which is what determines a accurate and fast player.

btw. if you just hit one string openly, how fast can you do it? thats your "maximum speed" that you should be able to apply to what i just said up above.

a bit hard when you have a scale in there as well.
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#18
But if you practice between playing an index middle pinky, index ring pinky, index middle ring pattern every time you do what you just said - you'll be a much much MUCH faster and cleaner player. Just because when different patterns show up you will not have to think about them AND your picking will be solid. So long as you pay attention to how you pick which unfortunately most do not.
#19
Like the others say learn a song you know. The scales are good to begin with but don't teach you that much about real playing and other techniques.
#20
Well I didn't really explain the overall picture in the first post...

I don't JUST play that. That would be insane. But that's the only solid technique exercise I've done for ages. I always play songs inbetween... Sweet Home Alabama, Simple Man, Layla, etc. Slowly increasing speed, trying to play the whole things through.

Either way, I'm slowing right down and building up again... trying to get independence between 3rd/4th fingers, mixing up my technique exercises.
#21
Quote by Hillz88
Well, I've maxed out at a dismal 100bpm, alternate picking up and down the G major scale at position 3 (It's form justinguitar.com's lessons)

Been doing this for maybe 3 months now... just trying to build speed. I can play 4 cycles of the scale at 90bpm, at 95 I can do one before it gets sloppy and falls apart, and barely scrape 100bpm with one cycle.

But even though I'm playing about 3 hours every day.. I just don't seem to be getting anywhere. My speed isn't budging, even though I've lost count how many times I've gone back to playing slowly to increase my 'accuracy'... in fact my hands seem to be getting worse lately.

Any tips to getting through this plateau? Good exericses that helped you out?

So you judge your ability as a guitarist solely on the basis of one exercise?

Forget speed, forget exercises and look at the big picture.
Actually called Mark!

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#22
If you have bad technique you can get to a point were you can't improve anymore. If you take lessons tell your teacher to see if you are doing anything wrong.
#23
Quote by steven seagull
So you judge your ability as a guitarist solely on the basis of one exercise?

Forget speed, forget exercises and look at the big picture.


This.
Now play some vocal melodies from your fav songs on the guitar. It will improve your phrasing and you learn a little more about composing guitar solo's.
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Last edited by 08L1V10N at Jul 13, 2009,
#24
I know how it feels =\

It took me like 3 months to play Snow (Hey Oh) at full speed.
#25
What a difference a few months of back-to-basics, slow, concise, precise movements makes.

Accuracy has gone up, technique has improved, speed is fastest its been for awhile - and instead of playing mechanically up and down the major scale, I've mixed up by practicising chromatics, major scale, blues scale, up and down, going in random directions, etc. It's all worked out - I can actually play accurately with my little finger too now.

And ultimately, everything sounds alot less SLOPPY!


So - if any of you are stuck, stop, slow right down, and (I know it's annoyingly tedious and exruciating) practice everything with precise, small movements. I went right down to 40bpm and played scales at every key on the fretboard, then inched up another 2 bpm, and kept doing this til I couldn't go faster. Months of that and my playing has gotten much better - I also practised chords all over again and sorted out my rhythm playing which was horribly neglected.
Last edited by Hillz88 at Sep 16, 2009,
#26
It's hard work, and can seem boring but it's the tried and tested way of getting better...and you often won't see noticeable progress on a day to day leve, it's only when you look back you realise how far you've come

What people lose sight of sometimes is that all along you're aim is simply to get better at playing the guitar, and to do that you have to practice playing the guitar and practice properly. Fundamentally playing fast and complicated is no different to playing slow and simple...you just have to be better at everything to play faster. There's no magic exercises or techniques, it's all the same stuff, just executed at a higher level of technical competence.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

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i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


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Last edited by steven seagull at Sep 16, 2009,